Chambers D&I Awards: North America 2022 - Winners

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20 Jun 2022

On Thursday, 9th June 2022, we were delighted to host the Chambers Diversity and Inclusion Awards: North America 2022. It was wonderful to return to an in-person event after two years of virtual ceremonies. This year’s awards were in association with Kirkland and Ellis, and sponsored by Abbvie and Ropes & Gray LLP.

Ellie Gerszt and Luke Vincett, D&I Managers

Winning a Chambers D&I Award sets an impressive precedent, and marks a globally-recognised achievement of excellence in furthering the advancement of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. By raising awareness and empowering the people committed to positive action, together we can start a new chapter with equal opportunities for everyone.

The ceremony began with an introduction from Chambers and Partners D&I Managers, Ellie Gerszt and Luke Vincett, followed by a speech by Ellisen Turner, a partner at Kirkland and Ellis. Ourk keynote speaker was Lloyd Johnson Jr. who took the opportunity to share some of his story and vision for the future of D&I.

Below, you will find blurbs for all of this year’s winners.





Ellisen Turner, Kirkland & Ellis

Chambers D&I Awards: North America 2022 – Shortlist

USA Categories 

Individual Awards (Private Practice)

Diversity & Inclusion: Future Leader
Amanda Phillips – Greenspoon Marder LLP
Dexter Pearce – Stoel Rives LLP
Emily Balter – Bercow Radell Fernandez Larkin & Tapanes
James Alphonse Nortey – Morgan, Lewis and Bockius
Juan J. Garcia – AMS TRADE LLP
Kabir Duggal – Arnold & Porter
Kenneth Trujillo-Jamison – Willenken LLP
Natalie C. Groot – Mintz
Nadia E. Haghighatian – Holland & Knight
Nitya Kumar Goyal – Dechert
Shannon McNeal – Davis Wright Tremaine
Tzy-Ying (Sandy) Chiu – Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Highly Commended: Dexter Pearce – Stoel Rives LLP

Winner: Nitya Kumar Goyal – Dechert
As an associate Nitya Kumar Goyal held numerous positions of great responsibility at the firm as part of the hiring committee and also monitoring work allocation, while ensuring diverse attorneys had access to sponsorship opportunities. She also co-founded an ‘office hours’ mentoring scheme during the pandemic and is an active member of the Asian American affinity group.

Diversity & Inclusion: Lawyer of the Year
Adé Heyliger – Weil, Gotshal & Manges, LLP
Ava Lias-Booker – McGuireWoods LLP
Bonnie Lau – Morrison & Foerster
Darin Snyder – O’Melveny & Myers LLP
David S. Flugman – Selendy Gay Elsberg PLLC
Grace E. Speights – Morgan, Lewis and Bockius
Harold E. Franklin, Jr. – King & Spalding LLP
Jenea M. Reed – Stearns Weaver Miller
Myrna L. Maysonet – Greenspoon Marder LLP
Paul Loh – Willenken LLP
Raqiyyah Pippins – Arnold & Porter
Rita-Anne O’Neill – Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Sarah Zabel – MAZE Resolutions PA
Sozi Pedro Tulante – Dechert

Winner: Myrna L. Maysonet – Greenspoon Marder LLP
Myrna L. Maysonet has an extensive track record of advancing LGBT+ rights and inclusion, ensuring the firm provided same sex relationship benefits a decade before marriage equality was achieved. She also provides free legal seminars on topics such as same sex marriage, gay adoption and surrogacy, and trans rights in employment by partnering and supporting Equality Florida.

Pro Bono: Lawyer of the Year
Bernard P. Wolfsdorf – WR Immigration
Chava Brandriss – Davis Wright Tremaine
Edward Soto – Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
Liam Montgomery – Williams & Connolly LLP
Melissa Tapanes Llahues – Bercow Radell Fernandez Larkin & Tapanes
Michael (Mike) Jones – Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Rob Roberts – Ropes & Gray LLP
Stefan Dann – McGuireWoods LLP
Susan M. Finegan – Mintz

Winner: Edward Soto – Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
Edward Soto’s pro bono efforts are extensive and wide-ranging, with over 400 hours completed in 2021 alone. Highlights include helping to reform the criminal justice system working to end the unfair treatment of deaf or hard of hearing prisoners, freeing inmates who have been wrongfully convicted and aiding immigrants subjected to ICE detainer requests. He also expunged convictions for 36 women across Florida who had been victims of sex trafficking or abuse, many facing undue challenges relating to language barriers and sexual orientation.

Diversity & Inclusion: Outstanding Contribution
Alexis Amezcua – Morrison & Foerster
Barry Wolf – Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
Brian J. Winterfeldt – Winterfeldt IP Group
Carol Villegas – Labaton Sucharow LLP
Darren Skinner – Arnold & Porter
Deborah E. Barnard and Janis Boyarsky Schiff – Holland & Knight
E. Dee Martin – Bracewell LLP
Jeffrey Bercow – Bercow Radell Fernandez Larkin & Tapanes
Jonathan K. Waldrop – Kasowitz Benson Torres LLP
Leyza F. Blanco – Sequor Law
Maria I Sampedro-Iglesia – MAZE Resolutions PA
Tyrone P. Thomas – Mintz

Highly Commended: Deborah E. Barnard and Janis Boyarsky Schiff – Holland & Knight

Tyrone P. Thomas, formerly of Mintz

Winner: Tyrone P. Thomas – Mintz
Chair of  the Mintz Diversity Committee for the last seven years, Tyrone P. Thomas is also a member of Mintz’s governing Policy Committee, the Compensation Committee and the Partner Elevation Committee. His influence has helped set a goal of increasing the number of Black attorneys by 50% by June 30, 2022, which the firm are on track to exceed, hire an extremely diverse class of summer associates and elevate the most racially diverse group of attorneys to equity membership in the firm’s history, while the most recently elevated class to non-equity partnership is 33% female. He also mentors dozens of associates in the Mintz Sponsor & Retention Program.

Firm Awards (Private Practice)

Veterans Advancement: Outstanding Firm
Covington & Burling LLP
Greenspoon Marder LLP
Holland & Knight
McGuireWoods LLP

Highly Commended: Holland & Knight

Micaela McMurrough, Covington & Burling

Winner: Covington & Burling LLP
Covington’s Veterans’ Affinity Group take a holistic approach to supporting veterans in the firm and community. The firm has over three dozen attorneys with prior US military service and another 18 US veterans who will be joining the firm in the next year or two. Covington supports Veterans’ organizations at multiple law schools and, once at the firm, the affinity group provides formal and informal mentoring. Further, in 2021 hundreds of Covington attorneys worked over 20,000 hours on at least seven dozen veteran-related matter.

Pro Bono: Outstanding Firm
Arnold & Porter
Davis Wright Tremaine
Fenwick & West
Greenberg Traurig, LLP
McGuireWoods LLP
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
Ropes & Gray LLP
Selendy Gay Elsberg
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
Wilkinson Stekloff LLP
WR Immigration

Highly Commended: Arnold & Porter

(r) Oscar Shine, Selendy Gay Elsberg

Winner: Selendy Gay Elsberg
The commitment of Selendy Gay Elsberg to pro bono work is truly exceptional as the only firm to average more than 200 pro bono hours per attorney. One highlight of their wide-ranging efforts involved representing families of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. When the gun manufacturer, Remington, filed for bankruptcy, threatening to effectively cut off the families’ ability to obtain justice, the firm helped secure a settlement of $73 million, believed to be the largest pay out for a gun maker in a mass shooting case.

Diversity and Inclusion: Outstanding Firm
Baker McKenzie
Covington & Burling LLP
Davis Wright Tremaine
Dechert LLP
Holland & Knight
Kim Vaughan Lerner
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Labaton Sucharow LLP
McGuireWoods LLP
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
Morrison & Foerster LLP
O’Melveny & Myers LLP
Ropes & Gray LLP
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
Willenken LLP

The Baker McKenzie team

Winner: Baker McKenzie
Baker McKenzie’s long-standing commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion has accelerated in recent years, resulting in significant increases in the representation of diverse attorneys at the firm, particularly at partner level. They have also expanded their focus on socio-economic diversity while launching a global commitment to Disability and Accessibility inclusion, and signing on to Valuable 500.

Individual Awards (In-House)

Diversity & Inclusion: Lawyer of the Year
Amy Crane – Rhode Island Department of State Government
Angela Curry – Bentley Systems
Arvin Patel – Intellectual Ventures
Asha Allam – Formerly of Adduci, Mastriani, & Schaumberg LLP
Elizabeth Lester – Equifax
Joycelyn “Jo” Eason – Wells Fargo
Mark C. Darrell – Spire, Inc.
Robyn Buck – Bayer

Highly Commended: Joycelyn “Jo” Eason – Wells Fargo

Winner: Angela Curry – Bentley Systems
Taking a holistic approach to advancing D&I at Bentley Systems, Angela Curry introduced highly practical efforts such as rigorous D&I training, auditing policies for inclusive language, expanding the range of healthcare options and reviewing professional and internship programs.

Diversity & Inclusion: Outstanding Contribution
Damon Hart – Liberty Mutual Insurance
Deborah H. Telman – Organon & Co.
Erika Engelson – Deutsche Bank
James Chosy – U.S. Bank
Kim Gold – Genentech
Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe – Duke Energy Corporation
Sharon Barner – Cummins
Sarita Venkat – Cisco (Formerly Apple)

Highly Commended: Damon Hart – Liberty Mutual Insurance

Winner: Kim Gold – Genentech
Kim Gold’s D&I work has predominantly advocated for improved mental health and neurodiversity inclusion. By being open about her own experiences, Kim helped create a culture of psychological safety while she also serves on Legal Departments I&D: Excellence and Action in Legal committee.

USA Categories with no finalists

The below categories have a clear winner which will be announced on the night. There is no shortlist for these categories.

Diversity & Inclusion: Lifetime Achievement

Paulette Brown, former ABA President

Winner: Paulette Brown – Locke Lord LLP
The first woman of color to serve as President of the American Bar Association, Paulette Brown has been breaking glass ceilings throughout her career. Her varied efforts have seen her leading a delegation to monitor the first and free democratic elections in South Africa, launching numerous diversity networks and mentoring schemes, regularly writing and speaking on D&I and developing the Diversity & Inclusion 360 Commission as ABA President, which resulted in the adoption of Resolution 113. Most recently, she worked as the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Locke Lord LLP, a fitting finale to a career dedicated to both legal expertise and greater inclusion in the profession.

Diversity & Inclusion: Lifetime Achievement

Winner: Craig Glidden – General Motors
An ally to diverse attorneys throughout his career, Craig Glidden created a Leader’s Pledge detailing his personal and organizational commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion as part of the LCLD’s ‘Leaders at the Front’ initiative. At General Motors, his legal team created a diversity dashboard that allows the D&I Task Force and Legal Leadership Team to have real time insight into the diversity metrics of each firm hired.

Diversity & Inclusion: Innovation Award (Private Practice)

O’Melveny & Myers

Winner: O’Melveny & Myers LLP
O’Melveny & Myers are recognized for their innovative Redesign Project, identifying and addressing any structural biases affecting their key internal programs and processes. A team of 50 attorneys and business professionals worked in 17 small teams to analyze unique scenarios and ensure processes are free from bias, advising on adaptations where necessary.

Pro Bono: Innovation Award (Private Practice)

Marianne Ide, Davis Wright Tremaine and Zahra Damji, Chambers and Partners

Winner: Davis Wright Tremaine
Davis Wright Tremaine are rewarded for the originality of their pro bono efforts. Their first-of-its-kind In House Pro Bono Summit brings together in-house legal teams from across the country to help teams use their skills to address key social issues. Another first-of-its-kind program is ProJourn, in which they partner with Microsoft to support local newsrooms that do not have access to essential legal services.

Environment & Sustainability: Innovation Award (Private Practice)

Morrison & Foerster

Winner: Morrison & Foerster LLP
A founding member of the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy initiative, launched in conjunction with the Global Climate Action Summit, Morrison & Foerster combine strong Social Enterprise and Impact Investing and Energy practices with an extensive pro bono program aimed at tackling climate change. Of particular note is their partnership with The Nature Conservancy, including advising on the creation of the Pacific Island Tuna project.

Company Awards (In-House)

Diversity and Inclusion: Company of the Year
AbbVie Inc.
Bain Capital
Bank of America
Wells Fargo

Winner: Medtronic
Medtronic have a comprehensive D&I program that has yielded fantastic results. They achieved 100% pay equity for women and ethnic minority talent in USA and 99% globally. Women represent 50% of the workforce and 42% of managers. The USA workforce is 38% people of color with managers on 26%. Their employee resource groups have grown by 35% in recent years while, significantly, all employees must set IDE goals in performance reviews and, starting in 2022, IDE performance will be connected to leaderships annual incentive plans.


Firm Awards (Private Practice) 

Diversity & Inclusion: Outstanding Firm

Aird & Berlis

Winner: Aird & Berlis LLP
Aird & Berlis recently expanded internal engagement and professional development objectives by formalizing their ABDI Educational Curriculum, ensuring D&I is top-of-mind throughout the firm with the use of an enhanced education and training program, complemented by year-round internal and external programming.

Individual Awards (In-House)

Diversity and Inclusion: Lawyer of the Year
Andrea Fellows – Oxford Properties Group
Corrine Kennedy – The Co-operators Group Limited
Tariq Remtulla – Airbnb

Winner: Tariq Remtulla – Airbnb
Tariq Remtulla is an active member of the Airbnb Legal department’s D&I Committee, and in 2021 he led a subcommittee that focused on diverse lawyer pipeline programming. The subcommittee sought to implement various programs, events and strategic partnerships to encourage and support diverse students and young professionals in pursuing a career in law. Tariq is also a mentor in the Airbnb Legal Mentorship Program and is involved in the intern selection process for the summer internship program for 1L law students.